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Ten Things You Can Do to Reduce Stress

By Gary Rosard

2009

    Ten Things You Can Do to Reduce Stress

  1. Notice something about nature every day. Feeling connected to our world is part of any spiritual practice. Even if you live in the city, you can notice the sky, the phase of the moon, the shape of a tree.

  2. Laugh, since studies have shown that laughter actually strengthens your immune system.

  3. Take deep breaths spending some time each day focused on deep breathing. Stress has long been known as a significant contributing factor in disease progression of all kinds. Incorporating a program of breathing exercises during stretching will increase oxygen flow and promote relaxation.

  4. Soak a washcloth in hot water, wring it out and scrub your body. Keep it hot, scrub vigorously. You will stimulate flow in your lymphatic system, remove dead cells, open up your pores to aid in release of toxins. And it just feels so invigorating.

  5. Count 10 things you are grateful for every day to help reinforce a positive attitude about your life.

  6. Focus on chewing your food because such "conscious chewing" forces you to slow down, pay more attention to what you are eating and be in the moment. So sit down and take time to chew and enjoy a good nourishing meal.

  7. Have a massage. Even if you don't have time or the money for a professional massage, partner with a friend and give each other shoulder, back and neck massages. It's easy to do with no need to undress (unless you want to!) and a great way to release stress in an area where many of us tend to hold it.

  8. Practice "journaling" which is daily "stream of consciousness" writing, not keeping a diary. Start writing about whatever is on your mind, letting the thoughts flow as they come in order to tap into your unconscious, resolve confusion, anger or frustration about issues, and stimulate creative thinking.

  9. Meditate or pray daily. There are a variety of types of meditation, but they all involve quieting the mind, giving it a break from the usual ceaseless chatter. Many people say they don't have the time or the inclination to sit and meditate or to pray, but you can bring mindfulness to your everyday activity and achieve similar stress reducing results.

  10. Clear up unresolved relationships. Anger or resentment toward family or friends festers in our emotions and bodies; trying to find forgiveness and making amends is more for your benefit and health than for theirs.

Gary Rosard is a certified Holistic Health Counselor with offices in Manhattan and South Orange, NJ.


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